Detection of off-flavor in catfish using a conducting polymer electronic-nose technology
The Aromascan A32S conducting polymer electronic nose was evaluated for the capability of detecting the presence of off-flavor malodorous compounds in catfish meat fillets to assess meat quality for potential merchantability. Sensor array outputs indicated that the aroma profiles of good-flavor (on-flavor) and off-flavor fillets were strongly different as confirmed by a Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and a Quality Factor value (QF > 7.9) indicating a significant difference at (P < 0.05). The A32S e-nose effectively discriminated between good-flavor and off-flavor catfish at high levels of accuracy (>90%) and with relatively low rates (¡Ü5%) of unknown or indecisive determinations in three trials. This A32S e-nose instrument also was capable of detecting the incidence of mild off-flavor in fillets at levels lower than the threshold of human olfactory detection. Potential applications of e-nose technologies for pre- and post-harvest management of production and meat-quality downgrade problems associated with catfish off-flavor are discussed.